Acupuncture : the energies

The foci of energy

Once emptiness or plenitude are mentioned, one assumes "energy." This notion of energy wants to be defined. Accordingly, let's see what tradition says when recalling the Three Foci (of energy).

The role of the upper focus is the assimilation of the air energy absorbed at lung level:

  • By the nostrils and the lungs the organism gains the energy of the sky. (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 56)
  • The lung directs all energies of the body, it corresponds to the energy of the sky. (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 60)

The role of the intermediate focus is "to extract and assimilate the energy of food on behalf of the organs contained in this focus. It doesn't refer to the waste which is eliminated." (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 18)

The energies of the air and the food mix to yield essential energy or Tsong energy.

Tsong has given the common title of the ancestors to the translation of the ideogram whereas the creation of that energy has nothing to do with an ancestral heritage

  • Life is created by the reunion of the energy of the earth with the energy of the sky. Life preserves the essentials of this combination. These essentials are composed of two elements, one of which originates from the cosmos (air), while the other originates from the food (which means the earth). (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 8)
  • The energy comes from the stomach, coming therefrom it passes the lungs to feed the five organs and the six entrails"...."The blood and the energy are of the same source, only the names which they are given vary. (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 18)

Remember that:

The blood and the energy have the same source.
Only the names which they are given vary !

The formation of essential energy occurs at the level of the small intestine:
The small intestine receives the nutrient matter, which is going to pass into the twelve meridians. (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 40)

  • Therefore, a precise description of the energy which circulates in the meridians to feed the organs and the entrails, is given herein:
    The term energy is judiciously chosen, because it includes the idea of the mixture of fuel and oxygen source, which are necessary for the elementary functional vital needs (this word as such including the principal of elements).

The energy streams

Tradition tells us that this energy is purified and intensified by the original Yuen-Tchi energy which raises from the intermediate focus.
Thus, there are two energy streams:

  • From the interior towards the exterior, there is the ancestral Yuen-Tchi energy, from the exterior towards the interior, originating from the environment, there is the essential energy formed by the energy of the air and the energy of the food. (A. Faubert)

This mixture of three energies circulates in the central Tchong Mo vessel. It originates in the pelvic cavity, descends and emerges at the perineum. One division ascends to the interior of the backbone, the upper division splits into two parts and coincides with the meridian of the kidneys from 11 R to 21 R, then it passes both sides of the abdomen until it reaches the throat, surrounds the lips and distributes to the Yong energy meridian and additionally to the Wei energy meridians.

  • The ancestral Tchong Mo energy circulates concurrently with the Yong and Wei energies. The material energies are represented by the blood, the immaterial energies are represented by the energy. The Tchong Mo meridian begins at the genitals, ascends toward the exterior of the body, dispersing at the chest. It also circulates in the meridians, runs in the arteries, the fight of which is noticed around the navel. (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 62)
  • The Tchong-Mo meridian transports the mixture of energies (essential and original), which is: heat and nutriment. (A. Faubert)
    If the energy and the blood of the Tchong-Mo meridian are equilibrated, the body temperature is regular. (Neï-Ting: Linn-Tchrou, chap. 65),

This implies a role on the organism's temperature regulative system

  • After having fed the organs and the entrails, the Tchong-Mo energy dissipates the surplus of it's energy in the lungs and is liberated in form of Yong energy (nourishing) and Wei energy (defensive). (A. Faubert)

In that case, this vital essential energy is not so mysterious, and I'm asking myself why a good number of acupuncture practitioners continue encircling esotericism whereas tradition also defines it clearly.

In the traditional texts relating to original energy deriving from the intermediate focus are not very precise. Following the contemporary authors, it is "heat" or "genetic knowledge" we are dealing with.
Maybe it is a matter of circulating hormones (testosterone, progesterone), if one takes into account that the Tchong Mo meridian begins at the genitals. We know that energy transforms into work and heat.
Each organ, each viscera and each muscle produces the energy it consumes by working, as well as additional heat.
This heat is partly preserved by vital needs and the surplus is evacuated to the exterior via the skin and the lungs, all managed by the temperature regulative system.

Metabolism of energy

The living material is a thermodynamically unstable system, which cannot be maintained without continuous transport of energy. It affects additionally the various operations, movements, chemical syntheses, transports of material against the forces of concentration gradients, all activities which cannot take place without an outlay of energy.
This energy is in any case necessary for warm-blooded animals for maintaining their body temperature. It is produced by degradation of food, which consists essentially of the oxidation of organic materials which leads to the production of carbon dioxide and water. The complete oxidation of one mole glucose produces about 686 kcal free energy.
The physiologically less active tissues generally have a weak metabolic activity. This is the case for inactive glands and muscles, also for supportive tissues (connective tissue, bones) or those which build a stack of metabolically inert material like adipose tissues.
The first stage of utilization of food, which serves to produce energy or for any other cause, consists of hydrolytic scission of macromolecules to smaller units, a process which is usually called digestion. From the biologist's point of view, it's a solubilization of food, a preparative and necessary condition for their resumption in the intestine.
Processes which are comparable to the internal digestion take place in most tissues once the reserve materials are mobilized as a source of energy. The hexes which are formed in the digestive tract during the digestion are absorbed and reach the different tissues using the blood stream.